Nas Says New Generation of Rappers Don't Keep Him 'Up at Night' But He Appreciates the Music

Tara C. Mahadevan
·1 min read

Image via Getty/Dave Kotinsky

Nas doesn’t feel like he’s in competition with younger rappers.

In a new interview, the Queens native told Financial Times, “I appreciate what’s out there, but there’s no one keeping me up at night.” He continued, “I hear a new rap record and think it’s great, but I don’t listen to it the next week.”

He did say that as far as young MCs go, the late Pop Smoke caught his eye: “We were happy to see that young king come up,” Nas said. “He was a breath of fresh air. The drill movement in London, Chicago, and New York is really exciting.”

Regardless of his comments, it does seem like Nas is embracing some newly established artists. Fivio Foreign, Lil Durk, Big Sean, Don Toliver, and ASAP Ferg were among the guest appearances on Nas’ King’s Disease album from last year.

The project earned a Grammy nomination for Best Rap Album, going up against Freddie Gibbs and The Alchemist’s Alfredo, Royce Da 5’9”’s The Allegory, Jay Electronica’s A Written Testimony, and D Smoke’s Black Habits. Nas also appeared on the star-studded Judas and the Black Messiah soundtrack, for the song “EPMD.”

Elsewhere in the interview, Nas discussed his long-running career and different business endeavors, such as his plans to turn his classic Illmatic track “N.Y. State of Mind” into a film.

Head over to the to the Financial Times to read the interview it in full.

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